Festive Fairs

Ok, so I’m a little bit late with this seeing as two have already been and gone, but anyway – if you missed me in St Monans and Strathaven you can catch me in a few more places (virtually and IRL) in case any of you need some Christmas gift inspiration!

My next event is online – Tea Green Marketplace, a favourite of mine showcasing the best of art, design and craft currently being produced in Scotland. I’ll be participating as HooperHart for this one…links to event coming soon.

The following weekend I’ll be joining our friends at Folksy as Rudy & the Rowan Tree for the inaugural online Folksy Local Scotland Christmas Market

My final in-person fair of the season is one I’ve not done before but I’m very excited about – the wasps Winter Market at the Briggait in Glasgow. WASPS is an award-winning charity which provides affordable studio space for over 800 artists working in Scotland. I’ll be exhibiting as HooperHart at this one, and it’s sure to be a great event with lots of fantastic artists and designers, so pop along if you can on December 11th & 12th.

Light The North

I mentioned that I was working on a sculpture for the Wild in Art Light the North art trail way back in December; well after a couple of covid-related delays, I’m happy to report that Light the North is now live! Shining a light on the streets of the North-East of Scotland, each lighthouse will be auctioned off in early November 2021 to raise funds for Clan Cancer Support.

My lighthouse is called Ahoy There! and is sponsored by North Star Shipping. It is located on the Wellington Suspension Bridge in the Torry area of Aberdeen. Unfortunately I’m not able to travel there to see it in situ but have been enjoying all the photographs of it that have been popping up on Instagram:

There are 50 lighthouses across the North East, Orkney and Shetland and there’s some absolute belters so if you’re up that way make sure and keep your eyes peeled!

Images by viczmitch, headbeeguy, cockapoo.sky, flyawaylisa, racheldaviesmosaics, danoaberdeen, frame.rachel, thepereheadtrail, walkscalloway, iainamhenderson, roxies.adventures on Instagram

Tea Green Marketplace Month

Just a quickie to let you know that there’s a month of online events starting on July 1st organised by the brilliant Tea Green Events There will be three weekends of online markets (I’ll be taking part in the first one on July 3rd & 4th), an exclusive online shop, virtual open studios, online workshops and even a real life treasure hunt!

There will be hundreds of amazingly talented Scotland-based artists, designers and makers involved, and I’ll also have a special offer available for the entire month, so follow Tea Green on Facebook and Instagram to keep up to date with all the events.

Hope to see you there!

Folksy Featured Maker

I am very excited to tell you that as Rudy and the Rowan Tree I am Folksy’s featured maker! πŸŽ‰πŸ’₯πŸ’—

I was over the moon to be invited to be a featured maker, and join a select group of wonderfully talented UK-based makers, artists and designers. Each of us are interviewed for the Folksy blog (quite challenging – it made me really consider what I do and why) and there’s also a Folksy Instagram Takeover!

I am so glad I went with opening a Folksy shop for my side hustle Rudy and the Rowan Tree – the team are really helpful and supportive and the wider community of sellers are a lovely bunch! I like the fact that the Folksy platform is relatively small and easy to navigate, and is always my go-to place for good quality, handcrafted gifts. Starting as a little sideline to use up some wooden off-cuts two years ago, RATRT has become a part of my business where I can just mess about with paint, experiment with colour and texture, and generally go where the mood takes me! Who knows where that will be, but it’s guaranteed to be fun (for me if not for anyone else!).

Thanks for reading and please check out my Folksy interview here x

First Fair of the Year!

Yes, it’s happening (albeit online only) – my first fair of the year takes place this weekend (15th & 16th of May) at 10am!

This one is a bit different in that all the ‘stallholders’ have uploaded their work to one online gallery to make it easier for customers to browse and shop, so instead of purchasing from numerous different online shops, everything can be placed into one basket and paid for in one transaction.

I’m offering free postage on everything and there’ll be loads of lovely Scottish-made goodies from food and booze to fine art to peruse, so pop along this weekend!

Thanks for reading x

Roll on Springtime

Once again the passing of time has caught me by surprise and the first few months of the year have gone by in a flash; the clocks go forward next weekend and the first lambs of the year have been spotted in the fields. Both of which I am very happy about because boy, has it been a long, hard winter. I found it a real struggle this year, and for the first time I really felt my age and became pre-occupied by the somewhat unappealing reality of growing older in a cold climate. Of course, lockdown no doubt contributed to my general state of mind, as I’m sure it did for many. So this year, more than any other, I am very much looking forward to springtime!

On the upside I am very fortunate to have been kept busy recently due to stockists (old and new) ordering my work; my heart goes out to all those small independent shops and galleries who have had their doors closed for three months now – it must be such a struggle to keep going, adapt their businesses, and stay positive…so I am very grateful to still be asked to supply them with my work.

Bothy brooches and bird brooches for Strom

Mountain and bothy pictures – an exclusive for The Modern Croft

I sometimes find customer enquiries (be it private or from galleries) can lead to new ideas and ways of working.. Some of my current staple designs have had their genesis in conversations with customers, which shows it’s always good to be open to suggestions and not get too precious about your work – you never know where it might lead you!

More on that later but for now, thanks for reading x

Hello 2021!

So 2020 is finally over, and there probably aren’t many folk who are sorry to see the back of it. We can only hope 2021 will be an improvement. I’d like to say a huge thank you for all the support I received during that strange and difficult year, whether it was online likes, comments, shares, reviews or purchases – it all really helped get me through it.

To kick off 2021 I’m having a little sale in my Etsy shop (10% off when you spend Β£20) and Folksy (10% off everything) – use the code HELLO2021 in both!

January is usually a quiet month and therefore a good opportunity to plan ahead and start new work – I’ve already got a list of things I want to get started on so watch this space!

Thanks for reading and all the best for 2021 x

Light the North

Now that my shops have closed for the holidays, and the last of the Christmas orders have been dispatched, it’s time to concentrate on another project. Way, way back at the beginning of 2020 (another time, another world) I responded to a call out for artists to submit designs for Light the North – the latest Scotland-based sculpture trail raising funds for cancer support. As with everything else this year, the planned date for the event had to be postponed, so I put it to the back of my mind in the hope that it would happen at some point. Well, I’m delighted to say that Light the North is going ahead in March 2021 and one of my designs has been selected!

I can’t reveal any details of my design at this point but I will be posting updates over the next two weeks of my progress on social media. It’s such an exciting and worthwhile project to be involved in – over 45 fibreglass lighthouses standing 2.5 metres tall, will shine a light over the north-east, Orkney and Shetland to inspire visitors and locals to explore and engage with this beautiful region of Scotland, whilst raising funds and awareness of the vital support provided by CLAN to people affected by cancer. You can follow Light the North on social media to see all the event’s news.

Thanks for reading, and have a safe and peaceful Christmas x

Folksy Christmas Market

December 5th & 6th sees my last online fair of the year, and what a strange year it’s been. Every maker, artist and designer who would normally make most of their income at seasonal fairs and markets has had to adapt to selling their work online rather than face to face. And it’s been a very steep learning curve for everyone involved, including the organisers of these ‘virtual’ events! There has definitely been much more work involved in preparing for an online market; with an actual market all you have to do is make the work and turn up! The virtual world requires photographs, videos, even audio recordings! Which all takes time. And then of course you spend hours packaging orders followed by repeated trips to the post office (I’m not complaining, honest)! I’m just looking forward to a time when we can all gather together, chat to customers (and other makers) and have a bit of fun again.

Anyway, I am looking forward to the Folksy Christmas Market as it’s the first online fair I’ve done as Rudy and the Rowan Tree. I’ve had a sneek peek and there is so much incredible work on there it’s ridiculous! The standard and variety of art, craft, and design is truly phenomenal, and proves we are really punching above our weight in the UK when it comes to creating beautiful products. Find me in the ‘Art’ section and the ‘Scotland’ section!

Hope to see you’ll pop by this weekend!

Thanks for reading πŸ™‚

Super Market Virtual Christmas 2020

This weekend sees the launch of the UK’s first immersive virtual market experience, which I’m very excited to be a part of! Super Market Virtual opens to the public on Sunday November 22nd and ends on December 14th, with over 150 independent Scotland-based businesses taking part:

“β€˜Walk around’ and browse the individual stalls of over 150 independent Scottish brands across 10 categories, fill your basket, and then get it posted to your door for free. ​Each stall will have a personal voice message from the seller telling shoppers a bit about themselves and their brand – really bringing the marketplace to life and giving visitors a genuine β€˜meet the maker’ experience.”

A unique way to shop online this Christmas and support small businesses this Christmas!